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‘Pointillism Revisited’ by Dimitri Likissas now on at Guy Hepner Gallery
June 17, 2018
The famed New York gallery, Guy Hepner is now showing ‘Pointillism Revisited’ by revered artist Dimitri Likissas, in association with curators, the TAX Collection.
Dimitri Likissas was born and raised in Belgium and has Greek roots, but in his 20s found himseld moving to the Caribbean where he focussed on his art and became a fully fledged artist.
His work stems from a long tradition of using distinct dots of color in art, which the viewer’s mind blends together to create the final image. Playing with chromatic tonality and the dissection of visual planes, Dimitri creates works that seem to move and undulate within the canvas as if attempting to escape their two-dimensional confines. While the dots work together in harmony to create the image, their circular nature acts in opposition to his square or rectangular canvases, reminding us of the basic elements of life and how atoms are in a constant movement – propelling against each other – creating matter itself.
Having studied the works of the original Pointillist masters, such as Georges Seurat and Henr Edmond-Cross, as well as pop artists like Roy Lichtenstein and Keith Haring, Likissas gives us a fresh interpretation on the usage of dots in painting. And 20 years on, his work has maintained that same technical and stylistic approach, while the content has developed as he has moved through different countries and stages of his life.
Here, he talks to Candid Magazine’s Sarah Jones;
Sarah Jones: Tell us about your background – where, when, why you studied art?
Dimitri Likissas: I am a self-taught artist. And I am proud about that fact, as I don’t think an institution makes you an artist. I started my career as a graphic designer for newspapers in the Caribbean where I learned the entire craft of being artistic with images and text to create appeal for the newspapers.
SJ: How is the pop art landscape changing?
DL: I have to say that I am a bit annoyed to see yet another re-hash of so-calledgraffiti or street art which seem now to be the new pop art. I mean, how many Donald Ducks, Popeyes and Monopoly guys can one take? It looks like everyone is jumping on the bandwagon.
SJ: For your exhibition, what do you want your viewer to feel?
DL: I want them to be immersed in the works that I created by looking at the dot pattern, staring at it from close by, where they will see their eyes will change focus, and when they close their eyes they will see the negative of the work burned on their eyelids. To take a distance from the work and see it anew. (As the work is optical art as well, it changes depending on the distance of the viewer towards the work).
SJ: How many pieces in the collection?
DL: Eleven pieces within 4 bodies of work.
SJ: What is your favourite medium and why?
DL: My favourite medium is canvas as it very convenient for me in my studio to work with and for right now I am using liquid oil paint. I love the gloss it produces and the smooth surface.
SJ: Who/what has had the biggest impact on your career?
DL: Instagram now in terms of exposure and relationship building with collectors. Keith Haring and Nam June Paik as I met them when I was a teenager.
Words by Sarah Jones
Pointillism Revisited by Dimitri Likissas on show at Guy Hepner until the 22nd June, 2018.